In 2021, grants were awarded to Yale GSAS doctoral candidates and postdocs to support the creation of innovative educational resources that promote learning in classrooms or other teaching settings. Please explore the range of projects that the Poorvu Center funded. You can find videos and abstracts from our 2021 awardees below.
Xanni Brown and Ryan Carlson
Title: ”A Beginner’s Guide to Statistics and Programming in R”
Descritpion: “Understanding and knowing how to apply statistics is crucial in the social and natural sciences. “Getting StaRted” is a web tutorial for data wrangling, analysis, and basic programming in R. We envision this as a way to transition from the conceptual learning of Yale’s introductory statistics courses to practical applications such as research or data science. Through tutorial, we hope to not only provide the new skill set of working in R, but also to reinforce and clarify foundational statistical concepts in order to provide a solid platform for users to embark on research or data science careers.
Victoria Baena and Max Chaoulideer
Title: ”Preparing UNH and Yale Instructors to Teach in Prison”
Description: This project offers a new orientation program to support UNH and Yale instructors as they prepare to teach in prison through the Yale Prison Education Initiative. Instructors who teach in the program are seasoned pedagogues who are often teaching in prison for the first time. The orientation aims to recognize the reality of the logistical differences of teaching in prison, without encouraging instructors to adapt their materials or teach “to” incarcerated students.
Jennifer Strtak and Thomas Santa Maria
Title: “Developing the Certificate Program in Early Modern Studies”
Description: This project creates a certificate program for undergraduate students in early modern studies at Yale. The certificate program promotes the utility of global history, encourages discipline- and skill-based student development, and ensures an output of dynamic and versatile graduates.
Walid Bouchakour and Doyle Calhoun
Title: “La langue de Césaire: Plotting Aesthetic Production in French Beyond the Métropole”
Description: This pedagogical tool is inspired by the fact that, by 2050, an estimated 85% of French speakers worldwide will live on the African continent. The project proposes a counter-canon in the form of a bilingual anthology with a critical apparatus, inviting students and teachers to discover the linguistic and geographic scope of literature in French through diverse readings drawn from the Caribbean, Senegal, Algeria, Morocco, Madagascar, and beyond.
Da’Von Boyd and Joy Wang
Title: “Critical Political Science Pedagogy”
Description: This project emerged as an attempt to bridge two major gaps in political science teaching: first, understanding what brings students to the study of politics; and second, understanding how political scientists actually study politics. The project leaders hosted four seminars with guest speakers on the themes of Defining Critical Pedagogy, Centering the Margins, Questioning and (Re)constructing Canons, and Democratic Pedagogy. In addition, they convened a working group of graduate students and faculty to discuss how they might translate theory into practice, bringing their introductory level courses into alignment with their interests and values.
Chelsea Connelly and Kevin Hong and Gavriella Levy Haskell
Title: “Teaching Antiracist Art History: Toward a More Equitable Classroom”
Description: This platform is imagined as an archive of practices that can be used and revised by scholars and teachers of art history within Yale and beyond. Embracing bell hooks’ philosophy that teaching should be continually reflective, the organizers hope to facilitate a more self-critical practice for themselves and other art historians. The resources take place at each stage of course development, from the design of syllabi to the creation of course materials.
Andrew Arakaki and Tiffany Chang
Title: “EMPOWER: Enhancing research competencies in Medical Professional Students Online through WEb-based Learning Resources”
Description: The purpose of this project is to enhance research competencies among medical professional students at the Yale School of Medicine. Along with their mastery of clinical skills, it is imperative that these students be able to interpret scientific literature, and advance scholarship in the biomedical sciences.
Hugo Havranek and Jennifer Daigle
Title: “An Online Course in Writing Philosophy”
Description: The project addresses students’ struggle to write philosophy papers, given that (according to an informal survey) faculty and graduate students struggle to find class time to teach philosophical writing skills. This two-hour online course is self-guided, providing engaging and interactive examples of writing in this discipline.
Joseph Dominicus Lap
Title: Irreducible Representation: Diversifying Physics Curricula
Description: This project addresses the lack of representation in the undergraduate physics curriculum, by creating homework problems at the undergraduate level based on work by physicists from underrepresented groups. The website will collect these problems so that instructors can incorporate them into their courses.
Title: Bilingual Writing in Italian and English
Description: This project seeks to bridge the gap in undergraduate and graduate education between the personal writing that happens in lower level courses and the higher expectations that students experience as their language skills become more advanced. The bilingual writing tool accelerates language acquisition and builds writing confidence, while helping students overcome the difficulty of self-translation between their native and target languages. Instructors who use the tool will be able to integrate explicit writing instruction in Italian courses at all levels, teach common language to build writing and research capacity in students, and provide targeted feedback with a bilingual rubric.